Welcome to the spring edition of myFIS, the newsletter from York Family Information Service!

You have registered to receive regular information from York Family Information Service and York Children’s Centres. We hope you find the information and articles interesting and helpful.

In this edition we’ve got lots of interesting news about ...

New opening hours

How can FIS help you?

App safety

Free childcare for twos – why use it?

Free cycling sessions and #travelwithtots tour

Don’t forget that if you would like more information about anything in this newsletter or anything to do with family life, then get in touch with York Family Information Service on 01904 554444 or by emailing

New Opening Hours

You may have seen on Facebook or Twitter that FIS has new opening hours.

We’ll now be available on phones or in person at West Offices between 10 am and 4 pm.

We will still be available 24/7 on email, answerphone and social media and will always get back to you as soon as possible.

Phone 01904 554444    Email

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

How Can FIS Help You?

Who What Where SignpostA lot of people aren’t aware of all the different ways that FIS can help them.

Did you know that we can send you a
tailored list of childcare in your area,
near your work place etc? With over
350 childcare providers in York, being
able to narrow down your options is
really important!

wheelchair sports girlWe can help you figure out what services are available to support you and your child with a disability or additional need.

We’ve got lots of information about toddler groups, sports clubs, drama groups and other leisure opportunities for 0-19 year olds (up to 25 if they have a disability or additional need).Listening Girl

And we know that life doesn’t always go smoothly so we also have
lots of information about all the support that’s out there from
counselling to parenting courses to family mediation.

 Basically, if you’ve got a question about family life in York, get in
 touch with us!

App Safety

Technology moves fast these days and it’s likely that your children will be using different apps to you, so how can you keep them safe?

NSPCC and O2 have teamed up to help you do just that.

Support includes an online video called ‘Top child friendly apps that keep your child safe online’ and there’s a lot of information from the NSPCC about online safety including risks around using apps.

There’s also an online safety helpline with expert advisors, open 9-7 Monday to Friday, 10-6 weekends and 10-4 on bank holidays Tel. 0808 800 5002. 

Finally there’s an online guide to apps that children might be using, this can be found at Whilst this doesn’t approve apps, it does give parents information about the app, what to look for etc. so they can make a more informed decision about the suitability of them.

Top tips:

  • Remind children to think before they post.
  • Talk to children about where they go to watch videos or find information.
  • Remind them about how accurate information is and how people can present a different identity online.
  • Talk about the risks of sharing their own videos or live streaming. Once the content is out of their hands, they may not have control over who sees it. 

Free Childcare for Two Year Olds - Why Use It?

Some two year olds are eligible for
15 hours free childcare, starting the
term after their second birthday.

The eligibility criteria is based on
claiming particular benefits, if your
child has a disability or if they’re in
or have left care.

To find out if you’re eligible, go
online to
or phone us on 01904 554444.

So, why would you want to use the free
childcare? Well there are obvious
benefits to parents: you can start work or
training, you can get some free time to
yourself ...

There are some great benefits to your child as well. Research shows that children from two years old in good or outstanding childcare do better in school. Meeting other children helps your little one get used to socialising and being apart from you ... childcare settings follow the Early Years Framework Standards, which basically means they all have to make sure that children have opportunities to learn and develop through play. Your little one can also experience new activities and develop new interests.

Using childcare for the first time can be scary and confusing. To help, we’ve put together a list of questions to ask and things to look out for when you go and visit a childcare setting:

If there are other things you want to know, do not be afraid to ask!

Free Cycling Sessions & #travelwithtots Tour

Energise: 10 am-12 noon, 12th March

York Sports Village: 10.30 am-12.30 pm,
24th February, 21st March

Want to improve your confidence on a bike, but not sure where to start? Want to find out more about how to cycle with your little ones?

Bike Belles can get you started - come down and have a go for free! We are running the following activities for free at each Try Cycling session:

  • Try cycling on a variety of adult bikes from   
    the fantastic Giant and Liv Woman's range
  • Try cycling with your tot on a range of
    equipment including: front and rear child
    seats and a trailer
  • Try balance bikes - learning without stabilisers
  • Confidence sessions with a qualified bike
  • Tips on cycle routes and cycle safety in York
  • Buddy support scheme
  • Free Bike Loan Service with Giant York

For more info on all their activities contact Jo on:

(M) 07786525885 (E) or or Twitter @yorkbikebelles

Don't Keep Us a Secret!

Many families tell us they wished they had known about us sooner. 98% of families who have used us would recommend us to a friend. Don’t forget to tell your friends and family about York Family Information Service!

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